Posted by: Kate | November 23, 2006


In a hotel hallway somewhere in New Jersey:
Family of four knocks on a door, to report that all are dressed and ready to head to Aunt D’s for Thanksgiving dinner.

Door opens to reveal mother-in-law wearing no pants.

Mother-in-law says, “Oh, okay, I was getting dressed slowly because I didn’t know how long you would take. I’ll be ready soon. Willem, can you come in here for a minute? I have something I need to talk to you about. It’s private. Family business.”

“Sure,” says husband.  “We’ll just get the kids set up with a TV show and we’ll be right over.”

“Oh, no,” mother-in-law replied.  “Kate is not family.  This is not for her.”

Mother-in-law enters room. Wife gathers children, heads down to car, and bursts into tears because apparently there is a limit to just how much rudeness and exclusionary attitude she can take.

Husband later reports that at one point he explained to the mother-in-law, “Kate and I are a team. We tell each other everything. She already knows about this family business. We don’t keep secrets from each other.”

Mother-in-law replies, “Oh. Um. Well. Your father and I didn’t have a relationship like that.”

Bingo, sweetheart. Stop talking.

Last, overheard at a dining room table shortly after Thanksgiving dinner is served:

KATE: Jacob, for the fourth time, please sit facing the table. Just sit carefully. You’re going to fall out of your chair.


KATE: [Stands up, gets the Mom Voice on] Jacob. You have three seconds to face the table, and then we’re going to leave to have a talk.

AUNT D: Oh, leave him be, he’s fine. He’s just two.

KATE: [Takes Mom Voices off, tries Perky Family Voice] I’ve got it, thanks. He knows how to sit nicely.


KATE: Okay, bud, let’s take a walk.

AUNT D: Oh, but he’s only two, he’s fine, just let him —

KATE: [Mom Voice back on] I’ve. Got. It. Thanks.

Removes child from table, has a brief, to-the-point, and might I add non-threatening chat with said two-year-old, who agrees that eating dinner sounds like a better idea than pouting somewhere, and then they both return to the table where they complete a lovely, delicious, polite and well-behaved meal. And no one gloats.

Visibly, anyway.



  1. It sounds like you didn’t even throw poisonous darts at anyone. Way to go, you! Happy Thanksgiving.

  2. well phucky phuck phuck on your MIL. and yay for you on showing them all that hey, you are supremely qualified to be a parent after all!

  3. this is why after last year, driving 12 hours to mil’s house for thanksgiving just to be in a contest for Joe’s affections i’ve refused to go back.

    at least with my family i can just tell em to bite me.

  4. Its almost over. And you MIL answers the door with no pants?! There’s an image!

  5. Glad to see you survived!

  6. Poisonous darts? You mean that was an option?? Maybe next year.

    It’s over. We’re home. **ooohhhhmmmmmmm**

  7. I told my MIL yesterday I didn’t want Caleb to have any more caffeine before bed, so we’d be leaving his soda at her house. She then proceded to let him drink the rest of the can, right after I told her this, and right in front of me.

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